Smartwatches: Specs and reviews for the leading models
As the number of smartwatches on the market continues to grow, a few things are becoming clear.
With many reviews focusing on how long models last between charges, manufacturers are trying to pack in more powerful batteries or find other ways to extend their life.
Recently released models have abandoned the built-in cameras found in Samsung's original devices. Instead heart-rate monitors and ambient light sensors - which adjust the screen's brightness - are becoming preferred components.
There are still several operating systems powering the tech, but many of the leading manufacturers have opted to release watches powered by Google's new Android Wear operating system over recent weeks, suggesting it will become at least one of the dominant options.
|Smartwatches||Vital information||What the experts say|
|Apple Watch||• Screens: 1.50in (3.80cm) and 1.65in (4.2cm). Apple says they are "retina" quality• OS: Apple Watch• Battery: Unknown• Sensors: Heart-rate monitor, gyroscope, accelerometer• Water resistance: Unknown• Killer feature:The Digital Crown, which allows users to navigate between apps, scroll through menus and zoom into information• Cost: $349 (£216)||It is the most personal device that Apple's ever created. The key innovation that Apple is touting is a breakthrough in input mechanics, using a Digital Crown on the Watch that can scroll, zoom, and navigate the user interface without obstructing the display.The Verge|
|Moto 360||• Screen: 1.56in (3.96cm) LCD, 320x290 pixels• OS: Android Wear• Battery: 320mAh• Sensors: Pedometer, optical heart-rate monitor, ambient light sensor• Water resistance: IP67 (up to 1m depth for 30 mins)• Killer feature: The thin bezel and circular display, although the design has meant the bottom part of the screen remains dark• Cost: £199Full specification||The Moto 360 is a big step forward for smartwatches, but it's still not the excellent hardware we're looking for. There's a great design here, but it's marred by a power-hungry processor that can't keep up with Android Wear. The battery life and performance is a deal breaker. Ars Technica|
|LG G Watch R||• Screen: 1.30in (3.30cm) OLED, 320x320 pixels• OS: Android Wear• Battery: 410mAh• Sensors: Accelerometer, barometer, gyroscope, compass, PPG heart-rate monitor• Water resistance: IP67 (up to 1m depth for 30 mins)• Killer feature:Circular screen with the full screen displayed, but this requires a more bulky bezel than some rivals• Cost: tbcFull specification||The G Watch R packs a solid, quality build and great, traditional time piece looks. It's doesn't quite match the premium feel of Asus' ZenWatch, but the circular design is makes it feel a little less geeky and a little more stylish. If nothing else, it's enough to make potential Moto 360 buyers think twice.Gizmag|
|Samsung Gear Live||• Screen:1.63in (4.1cm) OLED, 320x320 pixels• OS: Android Wear• Battery: 300mAh• Sensors: Compass, accelerometer, gyroscope, heart-rate sensor• Water resistance: IP67 (up to 1m depth for 30 mins)• Killer feature: Samsung's first watch to use Google's new Android operating system, which allows it to be controlled by voice commands• Cost: £169Full specification||Android Wear early adopters should go with the Samsung Gear Live over the less elegant LG G Watch, but know in advance that it's far from perfect... The hardware has its hiccups with straps that are annoying to clasp together and, to make matters worse, you'll be taking the watch on and off a lot because of its terrible one-day battery life.Techradar|
|Samsung Gear S||• Screen: 2in (5.1cm) curved OLED, 360x480 (pixels)• OS: Tizen• Battery: 300mAh• Sensors: Accelerometer, gyroscope, compass, heart-rate monitor, ambient light, ultraviolet light, barometer, GPS• Water resistance: IP67 (up to 1m depth for 30 mins)• Killer feature: The watch can be fitted with a 2G or 3G Sim card, allowing it to make calls and function as a standalone device • Cost: 299 euros ($385; £239)Full specification||The Gear S is the strongest Samsung wearable we've seen yet. It still has Samsung-device-only restrictions, which may limit its audience, and Tizen apps are in their infancy, but it's otherwise a good-looking, well made watch. However, the default virtual watch face isn't very attractive in our opinion and the large watch straps are something that we would change too.Pocket-lint|
|Sony SmartWatch 3||• Screen: 1.63in (4.1cm) LCD,320x320 pixels• OS: Android Wear• Battery: 420mAh• Sensors: Accelerometer, compass, gyroscope, GPS, ambient light• Water resistance: IP68 (up to 2m depth for two hours)• Killer feature: First Android Wear watch with GPS• Cost: 229 euros ($295, £183)Full specification||Sony claims a two-day battery life, which isn't a bad effort in comparison to its rivals but we would've liked a little longer between charges... We like the fact that the watch face can be popped out from the strap and the possibilities it suggests for the device's future uses.T3|
|Asus Zenwatch||• Screen: 1.63in (4.1cm) OLED,320x320 pixels• OS: Android Wear• Camera: None• Battery: 369mAh• Sensors: 9-axis, heart-rate monitor• Water resistance: IP55 (can cope with jets of water but not being submerged)• Killer feature: Reviews have praised the vibrant colours offered by its screen• Cost: 199 euros ($257, £159)Full specification||The ZenWatch is a good effort from Asus, and represents a step in the right direction for smartwatches in terms of style...However, with competition already stiff in the smartwatch sector, and more glamorous products already available at a similar price, we can't picture everyone rushing out and buying one.PC Pro|
|Qualcomm Toq||• Screen: 1.55in (3.94cm) Mirasol, 288x192 pixels• OS: Qualcomm• Battery: 240mAh• Sensors: Touch sensors built into the strap, pedometer• Water resistance: Splash proof• Killer feature: Qualcomm's proprietary screen technology, which extends the device's battery life• Cost: $250 (£155)Full specification||The first issue I encountered with the Toq was figuring out how to put the watch on (not a good sign). The Toq features a rubber strap that you actually have to cut with scissors in order to fit your wrist... At this point, it's much more of a demonstration of some of the technology that could power future smartwatches, rather than a viable productAllThingsD|
|Pebble Steel||• Screen:1.26in (3.20cm) e-paper, 144x168 pixels• OS: Pebble• Battery: 140mAh• Sensors: Accelerometer, compass, ambient light• Water resistance: 5ATM (can be submerged up to 50m)• Killer feature: E-paper screen lets it work for up to a week without needing to be recharged• Cost: $249 (£154)Full specification||This is a sturdy, stylish (still retro) design in either steel silver or matte black, and its got a pleasantly curved, Gorilla Glass-coated screen. In short, this the most discreet smartwatch you can wear... Nothing's perfect - we'd like a slightly bigger (colour e-paper?) screen to fill the watch face and give some of Pebble's new apps room to breathe.Stuff|
|Cookoo 2||• Screen: 1.7in (4.3cm), LED built into analogue watch face• OS: Cookoo• Battery: 225mAh • Sensors: N/A• Water resistance:10 ATM (can be submerged up to 1000m)• Killer feature: Ability to last months on a standard button-cell battery• Cost: $150 (£93)Full specification||Cookoo claims about a one-year battery life in standby or nine months with daily alerts. Not having to charge the watch is an awesome feature... For now the Cookoo feels unfinished to me. The device itself is solid overall, but the phone apps are still lacking to the point that the watch is unusable at times. Connectedly|
|Leapfrog LeapBand||• Screen: 1.44 in (3.66cm) LCD, 128×128pixels• OS: Leapfrog• Battery:Unclear, but firm says it will last 3-4 days depending on usage• Sensors: Pedometer• Water resistance:Can be cleaned with damp cloth, but should not be submerged• Killer feature:Fitness-related games targeted at four- to seven-year-olds• Cost: £30Full specification||Is LeapBand silly? Sure, in a sense, because why should little children need a gadget to be active? But there are little kids that aren't active enough, and the idea of using games to motivate fitness is smart: in fact, I wish more fitness trackers worked with games.Cnet|